Using a chain of molecules as an infinitesimal lanyard to tug on a chemical bond about to break, Duke University chemists have found they can speed a complex chemical reaction.
Their unusual manipulative technique can reveal previously unknown details about the evolution of such two-step bond reactions, said assistant Duke chemistry professor Stephen Craig. It might ultimately aid efforts to develop new kinds of polymers that can "heal" themselves after tearing, he said.
Craig, current doctoral student Farrell Kersey and former graduate student Wayne Yount described their discoveries in a research paper published online Friday, March 3, 2006, in the Journal of the American Chemical Society (JACS). The work was funded by the National Science Foundation.
Monte Basgall | EurekAlert!
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